Phyrexian (language)

From MTG Wiki
(Redirected from Phyrexian)
Jump to: navigation, search
For the creatures that use this language, see Phyrexia#Phyrexian life forms.

The Phyrexian language is a complete, written and spoken, constructed language developed for Scars of Mirrodin block.

It uses a novel alphabet, with primary glyphs attached to a centered line that runs continuously to the end of a sentence, save for line breaks. Both the beginning and end of sentences are explicitly marked. It is written vertically, and read top to bottom.[1] These features lend it an appearance similar to a real-world script such as traditional Mongolian. Horizontally written variants exist, often when mixed with English text, and notably including the Elesh Norn promo.

Translation[edit | edit source]

This key is used for transcribing Phyrexian to more common characters.

A fragmentary understanding of the Phyrexian language has been acquired by study of those cases where both languages were presented side by side, and a transcription key developed. Transcription efforts are hindered by the low resolution of many samples, which can lead to confusion between similar diacritics. In particular, it is possible that ' and ` are equivalent.

The art for Dominaria's Phyrexian Scriptures, shared by its artist in high resolution, renewed interested in translation.[2] The text in that artwork appears to be the flavor text of the Urza's Saga printing of Dark Ritual. That translation effort also yielded a proposed syntax tree for the language.[3]

Proposed syntax tree

In the study of pronunciation, the most recent theory proposes that the main glyph determines the manner of articulation, while diacritics determine the place of articulation.[4]


Samples[edit | edit source]

Elesh Norn Promo[edit | edit source]

Sample Transcription Rough word-for-word translation Known English equivalent
Name line on the Elesh Norn Judge Promo[5] 'ZE_^Mx| T^HD^T^ MxNxL'ZNx A`KT^HZXx.[6] Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite[6] Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite[5]
Type line on the Elesh Norn Judge Promo[5] N^LV^Z" 'X:E'ZN* X:N*LV^XxD^.[6] Legendary Creature - Praetor[6] Legendary Creature — Praetor[5]
First sentence of rules text on the Elesh Norn Judge Promo[5] N"VFXvT^D^QX:T.[6] Vigilance[6] Vigilance[5]
Second sentence of rules text on the Elesh Norn Judge Promo[5] N*E| M:L_^_^| X^O| X^N*Q'X:Q_^N*| EN*O'X:EE'ZN* +2/+2 N^FXxLXvEX^.[6] (present tense) Other our controlled creatures +2/+2 receive.[6] Other creatures you control get +2/+2.[5]
Third sentence of rules text on the Elesh Norn Judge Promo[5] N*E| X^O| ON*T^JJX^Ax| X^N*Q'XvE_^| N*E'X:EE'ZN* -2/-2 N^FXxLXvEX^.[6] (present tense) Our opponents controlled creatures -2/-2 receive.[6] Creatures your opponents control get -2/-2.[5]
Flavor text on the Elesh Norn Judge Promo[5] First sentence:
N*E| X:HD^Z"ON*Xx| Z^FGXxN*| M:L_^_^X:ENxOOZ^N` N^F'ZFA`E'ZEXx.[6]
First sentence:
(present tense) Gitaxians [among themselves] other worlds whisper.[6]
The Gitaxians whisper among themselves of other worlds.[5]
Flavor text on the Elesh Norn Judge Promo[5] Second sentence:
ZL| Z^FFXxN*| X:OT^LT^ 'X:L'X:L| 'NL| ~X:GD^N*X:ENxOZ^N` 'ZEMxNxL'ZNx T^LX:GXx.[6]
Second sentence:
If they exist, [we must/will] Perfect world's magnificence bring.[6]
If they exist, we must bring Phyrexia's magnificence to them.[5]

Dark Discoveries[edit | edit source]

Sample Transcription Rough word-for-word translation Known English equivalent
Speech bubble on page 5 of Dark Discoveries Part 3[7] 'XxLXxXx T^LX*T TFV^ET^M:.
OX*'XvL| OV^T^LX^HAx| M:OX*Z^M:X:GFZ".
'X*L~XvL| Z^^XvNxLV^XxD^| 'XxOVHL^T.[8]
Speech bubble on page 6 of Dark Discoveries Part 3[7] NxOO'ZHNxTT"E| Z^^TH'ZHNx| VAxXxOAxAx.[8]

All Will Be One[edit | edit source]

Sample Transcription Rough word-for-word translation Known English equivalent
First scene of All Will Be One[9] N*E| X^O| 'ZOX:GD^N*T^L~X:GT| N*E| V^T^E~X:HT[6] (present tense) Our perfect work(now?) [flesh/is flesh/made flesh][6] We are perfection made flesh.[9]
Second scene of All Will Be One Second scene of All Will Be One[9] N*E| N*QXxMxLN

X^O| 'ZQC`FAx| N*E| X:OT^'ZGZ"| N*EN*O| 'N'X:EE'ZN*| MxOX:~NxLFEX:[6]
(present tense) (?) Our voice (to) (now) lost broken creatures [calls out][6] Our voice calls out to the lost and broken (creatures)[9]
Third scene of All Will Be One Third scene of All Will Be One[9] N*E| NxQX^N*| N*VFN*GAx

Z^_^FX:| N"VFON*'XxENxQX^N*| 'ZQZ"'ZONxV[6]
(present tense) Death [they fear] even as immortality [we offer][6] They fear death even as we offer immortality[9]
Fourth scene of All Will Be One Fifth scene of All Will Be One[9] 'X:L'X:L| Z^OX:ENxOZ^N`| ZGXxX:Xx N*GMx| N"JM^LZ^

N*E'ZQT| MxHX:D^LX:~X:GD^N"X:ENxGZ^N`| T^LXx_^GAx| X:D^EX:GZ^[6]
(We must/will) this world's false skin flay (to now/in future) new Perfect world face reveal[6] We will flay the false skin of this world to reveal the face of a new Phyrexia[9]
Sixth scene of All Will Be One[9] 'ZQ| MxNxL'ZNxT^L'X:T| 'ZFFN*XxNvQ'ZE&[6] (perfect tense) Great Work [has begun][6] The Great Work has begun[9]

New Phyrexia[edit | edit source]

Sample Transcription Rough word-for-word translation Known English equivalent
First scene of New Phyrexia[10] 'ZQ|MxHX:D^ X:Xx ~X:GD^N" X:ENxOZ^N` MxNxL'ZNxT^'X:FT| 'Xv_^ T^L~X:ET[6] (perfect tense) Great New Perfect world Work [was made?][6] The Great Work of New Phyrexia is complete[10]
Second scene of All Will Be One[10] N*E| V^J'ZZ"'ZO'ZVZ"VOVV| TL'ZT^| MxHX:D^LX:Xx'ZT^T^EN*FN* N^F_^Q'ZENv[6] (present tense) Machine Orthodoxy mana? new sources power[6] New sources of mana power the Machine Orthodoxy[10]
Third scene of All Will Be One[10] N*ETD^HZ^T^| 'ZOZO'ZGV| ~XvGD^N* Xv_^XxN*E N*GMx| OMxX^TT^GD^GN*[6] (present tense?) Mirrodin heart Perfect race? skin [(beneath?) burns][6] Beneath Phyrexian skin, the heart of Mirrodin burns[10]
Fourth scene of All Will Be One[10] N*E| X:N*OT^T^T^| N"EX^FXx 'ZFA`EE'ZXx| XxOYFD^Xx N^FAxX:LT^'ZEZ"[6] (present tense) Body whole is (but /present tense/) whispers mind splinter[6] The body is whole, but whispers splinter the mind[10]
Fifth scene of All Will Be One Fifth scene of All Will Be One[10] V^JJ'ZZ"| TH'ZGNx| THAxEX^| 'X:L'X:L[6] Machines Father come [will][6] The Father (of Machines) is coming[10]
Fifth scene of All Will Be One[10] T^L'X:TON*'Xv_^Z^FX^HMx[6] Work unmaker (or 'Making undoer')[6] Destroyer.[10]

Phyrexian Scriptures[edit | edit source]

Sample Transcription Rough word-for-word translation Known English equivalent
Fifth scene of All Will Be One[2] Top row: Z'QMxZxL
Main text:
~XvGD^N*X*ENxOZ"N*| N"V"OFN*FVV |MvOZ*NxZ^FMvMv.
MxNxLZ'Nx | V^J'Z"Z_HZ'Nx | V^JJZ'Z"THZ'GNx | V^T^_L_~Z*_ET | N^FD^QN*ET.
N*V"HZxMv | MxNxLZ'NxZ^FMvMv | Z'FFN*ZxNvQZ'EZx[11]
Top row: ??
Main text:
Phyrexia from void evolved.
Great Yawgmoth ?? Great Machine Father perfection saw.
Thus Grand Evolution began.[3]
Top row: ??
Main text:
From void evolved Phyrexia. Great Yawgmoth, Father of Machines, saw its perfection. Thus The Grand Evolution began.[3]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Doug Beyer. (November 24, 2010.) “Continuum”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  2. a b Joseph Meehan. For my first ever tweet I'll kick it off right.... Retrieved on 2018-03-14.
  3. a b c citrus_inferno. Evidence the new Phyrexian Scripture art translates to Dark Ritual Flavor Text. Retrieved on 2018-03-14.
  4. jankestmage. (March 13 2018.) "New Phyrexian Language, comment 371" — MTG Salvation
  5. a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite Judge promo
  6. a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj MOON_E. (March 13 2018.) "New Phyrexian Language, comment 368" — MTG Salvation
  7. a b Jenna Helland. (May 19, 2011.) “Dark Discoveries”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  8. a b Savil. (March 13 2018.) "New Phyrexian Language, comment 350" — MTG Salvation
  9. a b c d e f g h i j All Will Be One. Retrieved on 2018-03-14.
  10. a b c d e f g h i j k l New Phyrexia. Retrieved on 2018-03-14.
  11. Corv. (March 13 2018.) "Translating Phyrexian Scriptures" — MTG Salvation
Promotional Content